My therapeutic approach
I have an integrative approach to therapy and my core therapeutic values are humanistic and psycho-dynamic. Integrative means I draw on a number of theoretical ideas rather than follow one strain of thinking. A humanistic basis means I provide a supportive, respectful, non-judgmental environment. Working psycho-dynamically gives value to what is occurring unconsciously and puts these roots in our past experiences.
Phenomenology is a psychological term which means to look at the world through the eyes of the person describing it. This is essential to the way I work: I get to know you and how things are for you. A phenomenological approach means we can start to make sense of how the world is for you, identifying things which pose difficulty or are challenging and we can then move into making sense of your experiences. This is in contrast to thinking objectively, and judging from a place of ‘should’ which only disables movement and growth. I believe growth comes from a place of shared compassionate understanding.
Therapy is different from chatting to other people in your life. Talking in therapy offers you the opportunity to talk about what is going on for you or what you want to explore, without the usual relationship complexities. It is a confidential, impartial space and one where you can be free to truly express yourself, to share thoughts, hopes or worries that may be difficult to address elsewhere.
Perhaps you have something specific you want to think about or maybe you’re not sure but you feel ‘low’,‘out of sorts’ or just ‘don’t know what is going on’. You may be surprised at how therapeutic it can be to share or to say something out loud for the first time. By saying it out loud in therapy you are not on your own and this allows you to go further by exploring and beginning to make sense of your feelings and thoughts with the support of your therapist.
I believe the most important thing in therapy is the relationship between therapist and client. This needs to be one of trust and respect. Initially, all that may be there is feeling comfortable together, as trust and respect can of course take some time to build. You as the client will lead the way with what you are comfortable in exploring as we work together. Working together we will explore your reality and I will walk alongside you as you discover more of your own world. As our relationship builds, I aim to help you discover themes and behaviours which have developed within you through your experiences, and to draw out unconscious influences to help you gain deeper awareness of yourself.